I, and lots of other critics who’ve never pirated a movie in our lives, have to surrender my cell phone and laptop to get into some advanced screenings of films. And then there’s Howard Stern. From The Wall Street Journal:
Illicit copies of the movie “Super 8” that recently appeared on Internet downloading services appeared to have originated with a DVD “screener” that was sent to “The Howard Stern Show,” according to a person with knowledge of the incident.
This person added that there was no indication of involvement by either Mr. Stern or anyone acting in an official capacity on behalf of his program, which is carried by satellite broadcaster Sirius XM Radio Inc.
That last bit is just plain bullshit. Someone in Stern’s office did not take appropriate care of that screener. When I do receive screeners, as at year-end awards time, they come with warnings and disclaimers that put the fear of God into you, about being ultra careful with the screeners, not lending them to anyone, destroying them when you’re done with them, and so on. The studios make it perfectly plain that you, the recepient, are responsible for making sure those precious screeners don’t fall into the wrong hands.
So of course Stern’s office was officially involved… by not taking that responsibility seriously, at a bare minimum.
Deadline.com reported the incident earlier. According to that and other websites, the leaked copy of the movie included text that appeared in one corner of the screen throughout the entire movie saying that it had been delivered to “H. Stern.”
Here’s what it looks like:
It was unclear on Sunday what additional steps could be taken by Paramount or its corporate parent, Viacom Inc.
Paramount won’t do anything, I bet. The studios rely too much on noncritic celebs to promote their films. They certainly won’t cut Stern off from screeners.
(FYI, my review of Super 8.)